Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Morning Special

If you have an early morning train or a flight, there are two things that are unlikely to be on time – your cab and your crap. It’s almost a rule. It doesn’t matter whether you book a Meru, Ola or Uber, like the police in an eighties Bollywood movie, your cab will arrive at the last minute. Given that three Uber’s cancelled last time, you decide to book a local cab this time. 

The fact that you wake up at an unearthly hour much before the pigeons on your AC is a torture in itself. It’s four in the morning. To play safe, you call the cab guy even before you brush your teeth. “Where are you? I have a flight to catch?” As expected, he refuses to pick-up the phone. And just when you give up on him and contemplate calling an Uber, the guy on the other end wings it like a politician. He mumbles, “Madam, reaching in five minutes. I’m on my way”. You know he’s not even out of his bed. Finally, when he finally arrives, he invariably lands at the wrong place. You can shout all you want, “C tower, bhaiyya. Didn’t I tell you C? C for Calcutta?” 
“Madam jee, that ij K. K for Kalkatta. I’m opojite B tower. B four Bombay.” 
You have no time for Sena speak, “BC, it’s is M for Mumbai!” 

When you are feeling as helpless as an honest tax-payer, wondering how Nirav Modi’s cab arrived on time for him to flee, the unapologetic dolt arrives. “Madam, don’t worry. You won’t miss your flight. Main hoon na.” Bless you, because this is the closest you get to Shah Rukh. And after this reassurance, he has the gall to stop at the nearest CNG station. “Only five minutes.” 

While in the cab, you remember the other causality. Your urge to go. There is no denying that we Indians are particular about our ‘time to grace the pot’. No marijuana involved here, this is strictly about getting rid of your solid waste. Most of us have a fixed time. Truth is, our entire day hinges on the time, amount and ease of the process. And yet, no matter how much coffee you gulp, there is no sign of any advancement of troops. Not even an itsy-bitsy spasm. It’s like your girlfriend has ditched you at the altar. 

Why, only yesterday you went twice, so what happened today? You can keep solving the puzzle but there is nothing you can do about it. As your cabbie zooms the Wagon R like SRK, alias Major Ram Prasad Sharma, aiming for Mission Milap with your flight, you dread the thought of using the airport loo. Have you seen the grim faces queued up at an airport loo in the morning? It’s like a war scene - sombre, painful and inevitable. After every gush of the flush, few soldiers emerge winners with a pleased look of Shashi Tharoor. Odder still is the sight of those who failed - they look like a hybrid of Mani Shankar Aiyar and Meenakshi Lekhi. Which is a pity, because their final trial is worse - the aircraft loo. 

But if you failed thrice, even D.Raja - the sole custodian of all prickly feelings looks more pleased than you do. If anything, it’s your meeting that’s down the drain. Because constipated people don’t give a crap. In the absence of any bowel movement, there is no guarantee of right vowel movement. The trip anyway is doomed. There goes the hotel’s complimentary buffet breakfast, your sightseeing and even your meeting. No cheesy lasagna with juicy zucchini or a pancake dripping with honey for you. All you get is papaya and fresh watermelon juice. 

So next time both your cab and your crap arrive on time, count your blessings. Visualize hundreds who wake up early to endure this pain – pacing, stretching, waiting and cursing with anxiety ripping them apart. Thank your stars. Write a gratitude post. Or visit the nearest temple with eleven coconuts. 

This piece first featured here - The Quint


  1. Lol! ha ha. This was so funny.

  2. Absolutely lolsome!

    What was that Murphy's law again? When things might go wrong, they definitely do, particularly for the one who's thinking about it. Only that in this case the person might desperately pray that 'shit happens'.

    A few years back, it was like a bolt from the blue (in a good way) that I suddenly realized, my days goes relatively well when I have that exhilarating feeling of an empty stomach in the morning. I did honest research work on that day and found that there's a mood - 'dyspeptic' - for those who have absolutely nothing wrong with them, except for that morning tour of the loo.

    And the Cabs! Spot on!

    Blasphemous Aesthete

    1. Right, so it's almost scientific. Clear stomach, clear mind. Always good to see you here Anshul. Tx

  3. Alka, I am so dumb..Until I read the latter half couldn't figure out what you meant by crap...Lol...Such a funny post

  4. Hilarious! Good one. And, so true!
    On a serious note, luckily I have't yet missed any mode of transport owing to the vagaries of cabbies. I was close once. Almost missed the bus, literally the bus, early in the morning. Like you said, when I called the driver, he didn't pick up. So I called the company. They said, they had to cancel the trip. There wasn't any time to shout at them. So swallowed all my anger, and got into an autorickshaw. I was lucky to find one, to reach the bus station, just on time.

  5. OMg Alka HIlarious!!! you had me laugh to tears...

  6. The sticker that I am for time and can imagine the pain of the cabbies not reaching on times that sends the anxiety quotient on a pulsating high. Just love the humor, Alka on the Main Hoon Na ka SRK attempting to jet fly in the sky...Mission Milap...truly said.

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